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tw2_usa

How Long To Get Good

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i've started playing four months ago and play every day for about an hour, and I think I have a better chance of finding Big Foot than Bm off the 2nd fret. For whatever reason most of the songs I play have a Bm and I just can't get it cleanly through an entire song. One day I will.

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I started this thread over a year ago. I'm now a good part of the way into my third year of playing. I read online when I first asked this question that it takes about three years to get good.

 

I feel for the first time I am getting good. When I first posted' date=' much of this response was about defining 'good'. Good for me is when I want to express myself musically through the guitar or voice or both together, I play well enough for that to happen. Am beginning to do so consistently. I feel so lucky and grateful to be able to play an instrument, especially a steel string dread.

 

Played a Hummingbird Pro at GC today. Beauty.[/quote']

 

That's good to hear and thanks for resurrecting this thread. It gets us all thinking about how much we have improved (if any) and that's a good thing.

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I think I have a better chance of finding Big Foot than Bm off the 2nd fret. .

 

Two thoughts on that. You can simplify the chords, playing the top 3 strings (triad of root, 3m, 5th). But also check your left hand position. Should be cupped like you are holding an orange. If your wrist is torqued, you may have a problem, Hosuton.

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"Good for me is when I want to express myself musically through the guitar or voice or both together, I play well enough for that to happen."

 

That should start to happen at the point when you aren't thinking about playing, but are just playing. Not just having your chords/scales down (obv) but being comfortable moving around inside of them, so there's a feel for how the musical bits fit together. As Albert said, good thread.

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Guest rogerb

44 years for me, still learning at this point, I'll let you know when I think I'm good, this may take a while!

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I was given a guitar as a Birthday present when I was either 7, 8, or 9... an inexpensive flat top.

I had already begun to play a few simple chords and pick melodies on a brother's guitar, but of course, I was very young, and an untrained beginner.

I stuck with it, as I seemed to have an affinity for it, and by the time I was 14 I was playing lead guitar in local bands.

I copied the leads and rythm that I heard on the radio (AM in those days) and on records. At Gigs (I never said Gig back then, as I hadn't heard that word) people who probably didn't know any better would walk up to me, shake my hand, and tell me I was the best they'd ever heard...

Well, half of them were drunk... and the other half probably hadn't heard many other guitar players.

I did Okay, and I kept trying to improve, and then I heard about Chet Atkins, so I bought a couple of albums and was totally floored. "How did he DO that?" I'd wonder... and that's when I realized that I wasn't very good at all.

So, I set about trying to copy Chet, and I learned to play along with a few of his recordings.

Over the years I improved, as for whatever reason, I began to hear myself play new sounds, new notes and chords, and I suppose my playing simply evolved.

I started playing along with Big Band recordings, Manhattan Transfer, old Sinatra and Tony Bennett songs.. Loved it and thought "Now, I'm doing pretty well"... Yep, I thought I'd finally become "Good!" ...and then a few years ago I was watching some PBS pledge week program and a fellow named Tommy Emmanuel started fingerpicking a bunch of songs in such a wonderful way that I was totally awestruck.

Seeing Tommy on PBS re-inspired me to get better, and I've been working on improving my fingerpicking ever since.

Lots of folks have told me that I'm "Good", but over time, one learns that GOOD takes on a new meaning as you progress.

I suppose the thing that has helped me the most is hearing other guitar players who've taken steps beyond or different from what I had been doing. It also helps to have an open mind, and not to get hung up on believing that you're good enough... there's always something to learn, something new to discover...

I'm always working toward becoming a better player, and perhaps another 50 years of practice should make me twice the player I am now. I hope so!

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